Country music singer/songwriter, Dan Higgins understands the challenges of living in a rural area but it's not been a barrier for this Nowendoc native.
The second single, Ain't Gonna Bottle It Up from his yet to be released debut album, Make Love Enough, made its way to number six on the Country Songs Top 40 Australian Airplay Chart and stayed there for two weeks.
Not bad for a boy who grew up on a farm in a tiny village south of Walcha. He's the second youngest in his family with two brothers and a sister all raised by musical parents.
Instead of making the journey to Walcha each day for high school, Dan and his siblings were homeschooled and part of their learning included music.
"My father played trumpet and my mum was a pianist," Dan said. "We played a lot of music together as a family. Mum taught us piano at a young age."
Like many children, in the beginning learning music wasn't a choice but before long it had became a passion. By age eight, Dan's interest turned to guitar.
"I saw my mentors played guitar and I thought it would be good to learn," Dan explained.
The family would make the journey to Armidale fortnightly to take care of the shopping and that's when Dan would take his guitar lessons.
As he got older, he started travelling to Tamworth for the Country Music Festival and eventually he started busking with his brothers.
Growing up on the family farm, he listen to a lot of music by country singer/songwriter Lee Kernaghan.
"I really connected with the lyrics," Dan recalled.
I want to create music that will some how help people and create the best music I can.Dan Higgins
As his journey with music continued, he started to get involved in songwriting.
In July 2014, Dan won 'Song of the Night' at the Songwriters at The Pickin' Pen hosted by country singer/songwriter Lawrie Minson in Tamworth. It was this meeting that saw Dan team up with Lawrie and producer, Steve Newton to record his winning song Home For Me which became his first studio release.
His music dream it to really connect with people through his craft.
"I want to create music that will somehow help people and create the best music I can," Dan said.
Dan recorded his debut album in 2019 with plans to release singles, the full album and tour in 2020.
Due to COVID, things have been a little altered and he now hopes to start touring mid-2021.